Tuesday, July 31, 2012

7/31 Bag ban, BC pipelines, phthalate disease, waterless toilet, Kevin Bartlett

(PHOTO: Laurie MacBride)
Laurie MacBride in Eye on Environment writes: "Sometimes, after weighing your options and finding that none of them are perfect, you just have to seize the moment and “go for it” – that is, if you’re to have any hope of reaching your day’s goal. Cameleon Harbour on Sonora Island is a lovely anchorage and a good place to paddle, even if the next rain shower might arrive at any moment – which, of course, it did. No matter: that’s what raingear is for, right?" Cameleon Skies  

With the city's plastic bag ban set to start Wednesday, Aug. 1, some Bellingham stores are offering reusable bag promotions and classes to get people set for life after plastic. The ban means that stores in Bellingham will no longer offer single-use plastic bags at check out. They'll charge 5 cents per paper bag as a means to encourage shoppers to use reusable bags. The ban applies to all stores, not just grocery stores. Bellingham stores offer reusable bag promotions, classes  

Alberta stands to rake in more than half a trillion dollars in taxes over 25 years should three major pipeline projects – all facing stiff opposition – proceed, a new report says.  British Columbia will receive just a trickle in comparison, even though the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline and Trans Mountain network will snake through the province and oil tankers will ship out of its ports. Proposed pipelines all risk, little reward for B.C.: report  

First Nations in B.C. are prepared to go to the wall to stop construction of the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs president, warned Monday. First Nations warn of civil disobedience if Northern Gateway pipeline goes ahead

A group of chemicals found in household plastics and medical supplies is linked to higher rates of diabetes in women – up to double the rate for women with the highest levels, according to new research led by Harvard scientists. Blacks and Mexican Americans and women living in poverty are exposed to the highest levels of some of these compounds, called phthalates, the scientists reported. Crystal Gammon reports. Plastics chemicals linked to diabetes in women; blacks and Hispanics most exposed  

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded a $110,000 grant to an Israeli company for the development of a new toilet that doesn’t require water and recycles the waste. The Gates Foundation awarded the grant to Paulee CleanTec as part of the Seattle-based foundation's efforts to “create the next generation sanitation technology.” Valerie Bauman reports. Gates Foundation grants $110K to Israeli company for waterless toilet

Many people have their own fishmongers and butchers, and now, with the opening of the Taylor Shellfish store at Melrose Market, Seattle now has its own resident oyster guy. Kevin Bartlett, manager of the Seattle store, spent his childhood fishing and eating shellfish out of the Puget Sound. He beat out a likely large group of applicants to head Taylor's Seattle store. Tiffany Ran blogs.  Kevin Bartlett Turns Hobby to Career at Taylor Shellfish  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT TUE JUL 31 2012
TODAY
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. NW SWELL 2 FT AT 14 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF RAIN AND DRIZZLE THIS MORNING.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 2 FT AT 14 SECONDS.

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"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

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Monday, July 30, 2012

7/30 Geoduck rules, Elwha Love, Marysville stink, Enbridge spill, Arctic drilling, PA wetlands, JeffCo landfill, green wine, bird news

Geoducks (WDFW, Dan Rothaus)
The extreme summer weather in B.C.’s southern Interior — from landslides and floods to wind storms — has become the norm, according to experts. Destructive weather now the norm, say experts

Donald Hansen said permitting more geoduck farming on Henderson Bay between Purdy and Key Peninsula will put a “septic dump” in front of his home and create safety hazards for those using the water for recreation. Hansen is not alone. He’s among people raising objections to proposed changes in policies regulating shorelines in Pierce County.... The county says it aims to tighten rules on commercial growers of the Puget Sound’s famously large bivalve – even going beyond state Department of Ecology standards.  Pierce shoreline policy changes fuel geoduck-farming concerns   

Just months after the 108-foot tall Elwha Dam was removed, salmon and steelhead are already returning to the restored habitat.  Part of the restoration process includes releasing tagged fish into the river above the lower dam to jump-start the recolonization of the habitat that has been cut off from migratory salmon for almost 100 years. Some of these fish are already spawning.  Spawning fish already returning to reopened Elwha River habitat    And, if you like to watch: Divers literally look into silt coming out of mouth of freed Elwha River

A planned study of odors in the Snohomish River delta could finally get at the heart of a sour smell that's plagued Everett and Marysville neighborhoods in recent years, proponents say.  Others -- including the city of Marysville and the Tulalip Tribes, and most of the people who attended a meeting on the subject this week -- don't believe it. They note that the odor has been traced multiple times to Cedar Grove Composting on Smith Island by inspectors for the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency, and not to any other operation.  Bill Sheets reports.  1-year odor study met with objections in Marysville  

Canada’s Enbridge Inc. raced on Sunday to repair a major pipeline that spilled more than 1,000 barrels of oil in a Wisconsin field, provoking fresh ire from Washington over the latest in a series of leaks. The spill on Friday, which comes almost two years to the day after a ruptured Enbridge line fouled part of the Kalamazoo River in Michigan, has forced the closure of a major conduit for Canadian light crude shipments to U.S. refiners and threatens further reputational damage to a company that launched an over $3 billion expansion program just two months ago. Enbridge working fast to contain Wisconsin oil spill, restart pipeline

Shell Oil is scaling back its plans for drilling in the Arctic Ocean this year. Icy conditions in the far North and construction problems in Bellingham have delayed the company's efforts. John Ryan reports. Delays In Bellingham Curtail Arctic Oil Drilling  

Sprint boat race organizers Kelie and Dan Morrison say they expect their upcoming sprint boat races will proceed as planned in August and September despite what the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says is a wetlands violation on property that includes the sprint boat race course.... Corps’ Seattle district Engineer Bruce Estok told Dan Morrison, and the Morrisons’ A2Z Enterprises, that Dan Morrison had committed “a knowing and willful violation of federal law” by not obtaining a permit to deposit material that was excavated to build the track, access roads and a utility line into 1.44 acres of wetlands. Paul Gottlieb reports. Sprint boat organizers aim to resolve wetlands issue with Army Corps of Engineers  

A showdown that may come to a head in September is brewing between Jefferson County Public Health Officer Tom Locke and Port Townsend Paper Corp. over a permit for the 3-acre landfill in which the company deposits biomass ash. Locke, who is also Clallam County’s health officer, is requiring the company to upgrade its landfill permit to include a groundwater-monitoring plan, a guarantee the company will pay for future landfill closure costs and a pledge it will conduct more detailed tests on what’s contained in the ash and how often it’s put into the company’s dump. Paul Gottlieb reports.  Port Townsend Paper, county health officer square off over permit for landfill containing biomass ash

Does it matter whether the grapes that go into that wine you love come from vineyards where butterflies thrive and birds sing from oak trees? At Klickitat Canyon Winery in the Columbia Gorge that’s what winemaking is all about. Here, the ecosystem - the nuthatches and bush grasses - are just as important as the grapes. Martha Baskin reports.  Klickitat Canyon Winery  

It seems like everybody has an opinion on what to do with the shuttered Kimberly-Clark paper mill -- including the birds. Hundreds of Caspian terns -- almost 1,000 by one count -- have made the mill their new home, laying eggs and raising chicks en masse atop the flat-roofed warehouse on the waterfront. Debra Smith reports. Terns flock to Everett mill after it closes  

At West Sound Wildlife Shelter, we have the privilege of saving the lives of bald eagles each year....One of the bald eagles in our care right now was severely injured in a fight. A fight with a dog? No. An osprey? No. A coyote? Nope. It was a fight with another eagle. Eagles are the top of their food chain; other than humans, the only animal eagles have to fear are eagles themselves. Kol Medina writes: Our national symbol can put up a heck of a fight | ISLAND WILDLIFE  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 248 AM PDT MON JUL 30 2012
TODAY
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 1 FT AT 6 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF LIGHT RAIN OR DRIZZLE.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 2 FT AT 7 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF LIGHT RAIN OR DRIZZLE.

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"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

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Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Friday, July 27, 2012

7/27 Laura James, DSP toxin, Bill Taylor, vibrio, pro-coal ads, NW moths, B.C. porpoise, coast cams

Laura James (PHOTO: West Seattle Herald)
Congratulations, Laura! KIRO 7, in partnership with The Trust for Public Land (TPL), announced Laura James as Western Washington's 2012 Cox Conserves Hero. As her nonprofit of choice, Sustainable West Seattle will receive $10,000. As an eco-friendly scuba diver, she volunteers her time to removing batteries and other pollutants from the water. James was nominated as a Cox Conserves Hero for her commitment to the Puget Sound. KIRO 7 Announces Laura James as Western Washington's 2012 Cox Conserves Hero   See also: Congratulations! Laura James wins Cox Conserves Heroes award, gets $ for Sustainable West Seattle

A newly discovered shellfish toxin in Central Hood Canal has resulted in an expanding closure area for recreational shellfish harvesting in Jefferson County. The latest closure, which covers beaches from Seal Rock in Olympic National Forest south to the Mason County line, results from a finding of unsafe levels of diarrhetic shellfish poison, or DSP, in the Brinnon area. The closure, announced Thursday, follows a similar closure three weeks ago for Quilcene and Dabob bays.  Chris Dunagan reports. New-found shellfish toxin raises concerns  

If you like to watch: Bill Taylor, a 4th generation oyster farmer, and President of Taylor Shellfish Farms shares his families century old connection to the shellfish industry his great grandfather helped develop, and to the South Puget Sound where they continue to successfully farm a variety of oysters (Olympia, Pacific, Kumamoto, and Virginica oysters) and other shellfish.  A 4th Generation Oyster Fisherman, and Early Ties to the Oyster Industry (VIDEO)  

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control is reminding people not to harvest shellfish in areas that are closed due to toxins or bacterial infection. Five people in B.C. have fallen ill so far this year from Vibrio parahaemolyticus, a bacteria that causes gastrointestinal illness.  The illnesses have been linked to raw shellfish served in restaurants, purchased through retail outlets or harvested by individuals. Health agency warns of illnesses linked to raw or contaminated shellfish

A campaign is kicking off in the Northwest to build support for coal exports. The Alliance for Northwest Jobs and Exports includes major mining companies, railways and labor groups, all signing on to support coal export terminals in Oregon and Washington. The group is launching newspaper, radio, and television ads.  Courtney Flatt reports. Pro-Coal Group Launches Ad Campaign

Butterflies are easy to love, but their night-flying cousins have always been a little harder to cozy up to. A group of Northwest biologists hopes to change that with the first comprehensive guide to the region's moths. Far from being a bunch of drab stepsisters, the lesser-known branch of the lepidopteran family includes hundreds of flamboyant varieties and exhibits a degree of diversity that puts butterflies to shame, said Merrill Peterson, the Western Washington University biologist who conceived of the online guide. For every butterfly species in the Pacific Northwest, there are at least six types of moths.  Sandi Doughton reports. Moths hold the spotlight in first comprehensive guide to Northwest species

The health of an injured harbour porpoise is slowly improving since he was rescued off a beach near Victoria Tuesday, a Vancouver Aquarium official says. The porpoise is eating small amounts of fish, his appetite is increasing and he is moving his body slightly again, but it’s still unclear why he beached himself, said Lindsay Akhurst, manager of the aquarium’s marine mammal rescue centre.  Rescued B.C. porpoise slowly improves

For couch potatoes:
the National Weather Service has a new web page showing cams along the coast.

Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT FRI JUL 27 2012
TODAY
W WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 2 FT AT 7 SECONDS. AREAS OF DRIZZLE.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. SW SWELL 2 FT AT 18 SECONDS.
SAT
W WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. SW SWELL 2 FT AT 18 SECONDS.
SAT NIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. SW SWELL 2 FT.
SUN
W WIND 5 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. SW SWELL 2 FT.

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"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

7/26 Coal poll, underwater map, MV Peters-field, Life Finds a Way

Salish Sea mapping
A new public-opinion poll for EarthFix finds a majority of residents in Washington, Oregon and Idaho express support for transporting coal from Wyoming and Montana through the Northwest so it can be exported to Asia. DHM Research polled 1,200 residents in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. Fifty-five percent said they were supportive of new coal export proposals. Within that majority, 39 percent said they were somewhat supportive and 17 percent said they strongly support transporting coal through the Pacific Northwest and exporting it to other countries from ports in Oregon and Washington. Amelia Templeton reports. Survey Finds Support For Coal Transport Through NW  

(Via Lynda Mapes) If you like to watch:  Over the past 10 years, geologist Gary Greene has been mapping the underwater habitats of the San Juan Islands through his research non-profit, Tombolo. SeaDoc and Tombolo have recently joined forces to create an underwater mapping lab for the Salish Sea.  Can't Get There Without a Map

On the night of Sept. 25, 2009, the bulk carrier MV Peters-field pulled out of Kitimat bound for Crofton - and ran smack into the side of Douglas Channel, smashing its front end. The ship had a qualified pilot on board to guide it through local waters and its progress was being monitored electronically by marine traffic controllers. Still, when the wonky navigational gear that had been giving the Bahamian-flagged vessel problems on the way from China went sideways again, the narrow confines of Douglas Channel didn't leave much room for error. Bang, onto the rocks. "What's to stop a loaded crude carrier from doing that?" asks Allan Hughes, the union representative for the 100 coast guard workers who watch over marine traffic in B.C. Jack Knox writes. Pipeline talk skips from 'if' to 'show me the money'

Carl Safina writes: "I can’t remember who dragged me to see the movie Jurassic Park, but one resonant line in that movie was worth the price of admission, this unforgettable sentence: “Life finds a way.” It popped out at me because it so economically summed up a truth behind all of nature’s stunning diversity and the continuity of the living adventure of Life on Earth...." Life Finds a Way—But Needs Our Help

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT THU JUL 26 2012
TODAY
SW WIND 10 TO 20 KT...EASING TO 10 TO 15 KT LATE THIS MORNING. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS. AREAS OF
 FOG THIS MORNING.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 3 FT AT 8 SECONDS.

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"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.  

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

7/25 Coal tax, oil pipelines, Kitsap shores, septic rules, ShellFest, seabird drones

From losing to winning (AP)
New blog: Winning in Sports Isn’t Everything. It Is Everything.

If the Northwest is destined to become a major shipping route for coal exports to Asia, U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott says mining companies ought to pay new taxes to help offset the cost of rail congestion, flying coal dust and other potential fallout. McDermott, a Seattle Democrat, is proposing to create a national "coal mitigation trust fund" by putting a $10 excise tax on every ton of mined coal.  McDermott urges tax to offset cost of shipping coal through Northwest  

Several hundred people turned out in Vancouver last night to protest plans for construction or expansion of oil pipelines crossing B.C.  Those attending the townhall meeting say they oppose the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline from Edmonton to Kitimat and expansion of the Kinder Morgan pipeline that crosses southern B.C. to a refinery in Burnaby. Hundreds turn up at Vancouver meeting to protest pipeline plans   And, columnist Vaughn Palmer writes, Political wrangling could bury oil pipeline for good   And, columnist Jack Knox writes, B.C. stance on oil pipeline...what's in it for us?  

Regulations to control rural shoreline development moved into a new arena Tuesday, when the Kitsap County Planning Commission launched into debate on the county's proposed Shoreline Master Program. During early deliberations, the planning commissioners seemed comfortable with the size of buffers and building setbacks recommended to them by county planners and a shorelines task force, which worked two years on the proposal.  County's shoreline protections under review  

A Whatcom County Health Department plan for tougher enforcement of regulations on the county's 28,000 private septic systems got a skeptical reception from some County Council members Tuesday, July 24. "This whole thing was overkill, as far as I'm concerned, from the start," council member Barbara Brenner said. "I don't want to hear more about enforcement."  Whatcom County Council skeptical on need for tougher septic tank rules  

Those who dig shellfish should go and check out ShellFest 2012 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 4 at Potlatch State Park in Mason County. The new event is part of Governor Chris Gregoire's Washington Shellfish Initiative aimed at restoring and protecting shellfish beds in Puget Sound.  ShellFest coming Aug. 4 at Potlatch State Park  

Wildlife officials plan to launch an unmanned aircraft on the Oregon coast. They hope the drone will allow them to monitor seabird populations on hard-to-reach rocky islands that serve as nesting grounds. The first trial begins Thursday at Haystack Rock near Pacific City. There scientists will attempt to launch the drone and photograph a colony of cormorants, birds which are accused of eating fledging salmon in large quantities. Jes Burns reports.  Unmanned Drone To Locate Salmon-Munching Birds

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT WED JUL 25 2012
TODAY
NW WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.  

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

7/24 Victoria sewage, Cherry Point coal terminal, Enbridge royalties, ocean acid, Costa's hummingbird

Mudflat Banquet (Laurie MacBride)
Thanks for the memories, Ichiro. Now, go play for a team that wins.

Laurie MacBride in Eye on Environment writes: “I love watching sandpipers on the beach, though they move so fast it’s hard to keep up with them: they rush along on their tiny legs, come to an abrupt stop, dip their beaks down for a moment, then rush on to the next spot, usually just a few feet away....”  Mudflat Riches  

Cliff Mass writes: "There has been a lot of griping about the weather this summer, with a number of you asking whether lousy summers are the new normal. Well, let me try to convince you that this summer is really better than last summer...." Answering the Complaints

Shame, shame: A group of scientists and former medical health officers say they plan to fight a proposal to build a $780 million secondary sewage treatment plant for Greater Victoria. The Association for Responsible and Environmentally Sustainable Sewage Treatment (ARESST) claims there is no scientific proof dumping screened and diluted sewage into fast-flowing ocean currents has any negative effects on the environment. Victoria advocacy group fights secondary sewage treatment

Over the objections of Mayor Kelli Linville and Council President Terry Bornemann, City Council has taken a tentative step toward a non-binding citizen advisory vote to gauge public opinion on the shipment of coal by rail through the city. At a Monday, July 23, committee session, council voted 5-2 to ask Linville and city legal staff to prepare a ballot measure for council review at their Aug. 6 meeting - a day before the deadline for measures to be added to the Nov. 6 general election ballot.  Bellingham council moves toward public vote on coal terminal (By 12:30 AM —today— the council had unanimously passed a resolution, according to Matt Krogh, asking for a cumulative impact study of all Oregon and Washington coal terminal proposals and specific studies associated with Gateway Pacific’s Cherry Point coal terminal.)

British Columbia has triggered a showdown with Alberta over energy royalties, saying it won’t support the controversial $6-billion Northern Gateway pipeline project unless it is given a bigger cut of tax revenues. Alberta, however, quickly fired back, saying it won’t be cutting its neighbour a cheque.  B.C.'s Northern Gateway demands trigger showdown with Alberta  

A big question mark stands over Washington's efforts to deal with ocean acidification is money: How much will be needed and where it will come from? A state panel, the first of its kind in the nation, discussed a wide range of draft recommendations Friday (July 20) at the University of Washington. Gov. Chris Gregoire appointed the panel —a collection of scientists, shellfish industry officials, and federal and state government representatives — to recommend how Washington can tackle ocean acidification along its coasts. John Stang reports. Washington shellfish at risk

The first known sighting of a rare hummingbird on the Sunshine Coast is creating some buzz for local bird watchers.  An adult male Costa’s hummingbird — identified by its bright, violet crown and throat patch — has been fluttering around a feeder in the yard of former Gibsons mayor and avid birder Barry Janyk for just over a week now. Rare hummingbird makes appearance on Sunshine Coast  And, for us bird huggers, Northwest Raptor Center raising 14 baby owls  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT TUE JUL 24 2012
TODAY
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 4 FT AT 7 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 8 SECONDS.

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"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.  

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told



Monday, July 23, 2012

7/23 Vancouver adaptation, WA refineries gas, septic rules, shellfish woes, Oly CAO, Enbridge pipe, Tony Wright, quakes

Upcoming: Whatcom septic rules, fees
The city of Vancouver has designed a climate change “adaptation” strategy to tackle a potential increase in street flooding, sewer backups, damaged forests and heat-related illnesses by 2050. The strategy, scheduled to go to council for approval in principle Tuesday, suggests nine measures to address the potential impacts of climate change, which is expected to bring more intense rain and windstorms, hotter and drier summers and rising sea levels, affecting the city’s economic prosperity and livability.  Vancouver plans to face climate change head-on  


Though Governor Chris Gregoire three years ago declared that Washington would treat greenhouse-gas emissions as dangerous pollutants, the state is now fighting attempts to force it to reduce emissions from oil refineries. Craig Welch reports. State, enviros clash over cutting refineries' greenhouse gases  

The estimated 28,000 Whatcom County homeowners with septic systems would face a new fee and mandatory inspections if the County Council accepts recommendations from the Health Department. The trouble is that too many county homeowners are failing to heed the county's reminders of their legal obligation to get their systems inspected.  Whatcom County ponders tougher septic system rules, new fees  

A new health threat has been discovered in Whatcom County shellfish. Samples from Semiahmoo Spit reveal unsafe levels of the biotoxin that causes diarrhetic shellfish poisoning, or DSP. All county beaches have been closed since early July to recreational shellfish harvesting due to high levels of the toxin responsible for paralytic shellfish poisoning.  Whatcom shellfish tainted with new biotoxin; beaches remain closed to harvest

In the gray of dawn, the day before the Fourth of July, Bill Dewey awoke to heavy rain. The owner of Chuckanut Shellfish panicked, and as the waters of the Samish River rose, he quickly woke his crew. Once at the clam beds, they found the baskets of shellfish partially submerged. The swollen Samish River and the threat of polluted runoff had closed the bay on one of the busiest sales days for the area’s shellfish farmers, with customers wanting shellfish barbecued or stewed for the holiday. Trouble on the half-shell

The Olympia Planning Commission will hold two public hearings next week on the city’s draft comprehensive plan, the first major update to the plan in nearly 20 years. It’s the latest chance for the public to chime in, after the city has spent more than two years and collected thousands of public comments on the plan.   Olympia seeks input about rare comprehensive plan update  

Facing widespread concern about the safety of oil pipelines, Enbridge Inc. promised to spend up to $500-million to reinforce its planned Northern Gateway pipeline to the British Columbia coast, while the Alberta government is launching a broad review of industry practices in the province. Enbridge said Friday it plans to use thicker-walled steel for delicate sections of the planned project, including more than 100 important river crossings, and install about 50 additional remotely operable valves that it can shut in the event of an emergency. Together, those measures will add $400- to $500-million, or roughly 10 per cent, to the $5.5-billion twin-pipe project, which would haul Alberta crude for Pacific export at Kitimat, B.C.  Enbridge plans $500-million safety upgrade for Gateway

B.C. Premier Christy Clark says the proposed Northern Gateway oilsands pipeline poses "a very large risk" to her province with "very small" benefit, and doubts British Columbians believe the current risk to the environment is an acceptable one. Christy Clark: Northern Gateway pipeline a 'very large risk' with 'very small benefit' for B.C.  

Anthony Wright, the recently retired commander of the Seattle District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, takes over this week as the new executive director of the Puget Sound Partnership. Craig Welch reports. Puget Sound cleanup agency gets a new director  

Since 1900, six earthquakes of magnitude 5.0 or greater have been recorded as having caused damage in Snohomish and Island counties, or were centered within the counties' borders. Bill Sheets reports. Major modern quakes of Puget Sound  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT MON JUL 23 2012
TODAY
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 7 SECONDS. SCATTERED SHOWERS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 7 SECONDS.

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"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told


Friday, July 20, 2012

7/20 Tony Wright, Billy Frank Jr., Cultus Lake trout virus, Midway Cr., Great Bear Rain Forest, Kimberly-Clark, BP air grant

Tony Wright
Straight shooting: The incoming director of the Partnership is retired Army Corps of Engineers Col. Tony Wright. He has a reputation as a straight shooter who's not out to please everybody. Before he got this job, he told the Partnership it needed more courage if it wants to save Puget Sound. He says he's not afraid to "embrace the porcupine." Wright: "My previous job, I frequently tried to make everyone kind of equally unhappy. You can't solve difficult problems from a distance. You have to get in there, become part of the solution and sometimes you get stuck with quills in the process."  John Ryan reports. New Director Aims to Shore Up Puget Sound Agency 

If you like to watch: Governor tours Burien rain garden, Seahurst Park and Environmental Science Center on Wednesday   and Governor Gregoire Visits Burien’s Rain Gardens and Seahurst Park  

Climate change is sweeping indigenous villages into the sea in Alaska, flooding the taro fields of native Hawaiians and devastating the salmon population from which Indian tribes in Washington state draw their livelihood, tribal leaders testified Thursday at a Senate hearing. "The ocean is important to all of us," said Billy Frank Jr., chairman of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission, a group of 20 Washington state tribes with treaty rights to salmon fishing. "It's dying. And who the hell is in charge? Nobody that I see." Frank was among several witnesses at a hearing of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs who called on the federal government to fight climate change and help tribes deal with its effects.  Tribes ask for action on climate change  

A virus linked to the death of farmed salmon has for the first time been found in B.C. freshwater fish — cutthroat trout in Cultus Lake — a research team reported Thursday. Discovery of deadly salmon virus in freshwater fish puts pressure on B.C. to conduct wider study  

The Squaxin Island Tribe joined the South Puget Sound Salmon Enhancement Group, Simpson Lumber and the Green Diamond Resource Company to open almost a mile of salmon habitat by removing two fish-blocking culverts. The culverts blocked Midway Creek, a tributary to Goldsborough Creek, the culvert ran underneath a railroad owned by Simpson Lumber, which is contributing significant funding to the project.  Opening up Midway Creek  

A scroll of signatures snaked down the steps at the legislature Thursday as environmental groups called on the government to complete the promised protections for the Great Bear Rainforest. Although most British Columbians believe that the 70,000-square-kilometre Central Coast rainforest is protected under 2006 and 2009 agreements between the province, First Nations and forest companies, only 50 per cent actually is. Protection sought for full rainforest  http://www.timescolonist.com/technology/Protection+sought+full+rainforest/6964022/story.html

The Kimberly-Clark pulp and paper mill has been closed since April. The company has committed to cleaning up the 66-acre property, and that could take at least three years, said Tim Nord of the state Department of Ecology's Toxics Cleanup Program.  Everett mill site may sit empty for years

An agency that enforces air-quality laws in the region is accepting proposals for reducing greenhouse gas pollution with money from a local oil refinery. The Northwest Clean Air Agency will get as many as 22 proposals by the end of the month to tackle the problem of global warming. BP Cherry Point gave the agency $3.4 million for the projects. The refinery paid the money voluntarily to offset the additional carbon dioxide that will be released from a new reactor that will remove sulfur from gasoline and diesel fuel.  BP funds Whatcom projects to reduce greenhouse gases  

Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT FRI JUL 20 2012
TODAY
SW WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 3 FT AT 8 SECONDS. SHOWERS AND SCATTERED TSTMS THIS MORNING.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 2 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 5 FT AT 10 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS.
SAT
NW WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT. W SWELL 5 FT AT 11 SECONDS. AREAS OF DRIZZLE EARLY.
SAT NIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 4 FT.
SUN
LIGHT WIND. WIND WAVES LESS THAN 1 FT. W SWELL 4 FT.
--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

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Thursday, July 19, 2012

7/19 Gov. Gregoire, sewage, Duwamish, water poll, Kitsap PSP, BP oil on rail, NOAA science Swinomish salmon, SnoCo shores. PT Paper, Pete Jackson

Chris does Puget Sound:  Governor praises Hood Canal mitigation program   and Governor visits Shellfish-tival  and Pete Haase’s first-person account, The Governor’s Visit to the Samish Bay Taylor Shellfish Farm

New blog: Victoria Sewage: Now Can We Flush?

Two pipes will cut a 21kilometre path through the capital region, helping to turn sewage into heat, gas and solid fuel. One pipe will punch along three kilometres of waterfront paths and seabed to Esquimalt. A second pipe will stretch 18 kilometres under residential roads to Hartland landfill in Saanich where, if all goes according to plan, a plant will turn sludge into gas and solid fuel. The transformation of sewage into energy will answer a public demand for social, economic and environmental benefits from Greater Victoria's proposed sewage treatment system, said Tony Brcic, project manager for core area wastewater treatment. "It's true, real and immediate resource recovery."  Sewage pipes to cut 21K path through region

The Duwamish is among the most polluted urban waterways in the Northwest. The lower part of the river was declared a Superfund site in 2001. That means the polluters have to work with the Environmental Protection Agency to clean it up. More than ten years later the EPA and the polluters are close to proposing a clean up plan. But there’s still some debate about how clean this river should be. Ashley Ahearn asks: The Question On Polluted Waters: How Clean Is Clean?  

A new public opinion poll finds that water quality ranks as Northwesterners’ top environmental concern. Davis, Hibbitts & Midghall Research asked 1,200 residents in Washington, Idaho and Oregon about their environmental concerns. Sixty percent said they worried about drinking water. Fifty-four percent said they were concerned about local lakes, rivers and streams. Those results track with previous polls. People said they were happy overall with the water that comes out of their tap.  Poll Finds Water Quality NW Residents Top Concern  

Kitsap County health authorities have expanded the shellfish closure related to paralytic shellfish poison into North Kitsap. Recreational shellfish harvesters are advised not to take any clams, mussels or oysters from the eastern side of the Kitsap Peninsula from Point Jefferson near Kingston south to the Pierce County line, including all of Bainbridge Island, Blake Island, Liberty Bay and Miller Bay, according to a notice from the Kitsap Public Health District. Shellfish warning expanded into North Kitsap  

BP Cherry Point Refinery may eventually use the railroad to get part of its crude oil supply from the Bakken Formation in Montana and North Dakota. Company spokesman Mike Abendhoff confirmed Wednesday, July 18, that BP officials have visited Whatcom County planning officials to discuss possible construction of $60 million worth of rail improvements at the refinery site to accommodate unit trains of crude oil tanker cars. If the project becomes a reality, the added volume of rail traffic is expected to be relatively low: a train every other day at first, and perhaps a train a day at maximum capacity, Abendhoff said.  BP Cherry Point refinery could get crude oil shipments by rail  

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, with the help of local teachers, is bringing real science to the classroom.  Teacher in the Lab is an expansion of the NOAA Teacher at Sea program, which establishes a partnership between teachers and NOAA to inspire students to become their next generation of scientists.  The sole purpose: Inspiring future NOAA scientists   

Washington salmon depend on the cold water from glacial lakes to survive. But as temperatures increase and glaciers shrink, salmon populations are declining, threatening the way of life for the Swinomish Indians, also known as the "salmon people." Hari Sreenivasan at PBS News Hour talks to Brian Cladoosby.  Swinomish Tribe Works to Adapt to Shrinking Salmon Supply

The Washington Department of Ecology has approved Snohomish County’s updated shoreline master program. The county’s updated program replaces its 1974 shoreline program – a set of guidelines that will result in significant improvements in the protection, use, development and restoration of the county’s estimated 2,000 miles of freshwater and marine shorelines. The update combines local plans for future development and preservation with new development ordinances and related permitting requirements. The update also significantly improves alignment of shoreline codes with environmental protection and with the county’s current comprehensive land-use plan and other codes.  Snohomish County’s Shoreline Master Program Update Gets Nod

Like lightning? Cliff Mass writes: "One blog reader told me how she and her friends were outside watching a lightning display and their hair started to stand on end, and then a lightning stroke hit nearby.  They are lucky to be alive." Lightning Safety

Paper bags, containerboard and pulp are a few products that come to mind when thinking about the Port Townsend Paper Cop. mill. What about electricity? Promoted as a “win-win” by PT Paper and its affiliates, the proposed cogeneration project is a $55 million investment into new technologies that can expand the mill’s current biomass burning capability to generate heat needed for pulp and paper production, and electricity to sell onto the regional power grid.   The $55 million question: Will PT Paper's cogeneration turn a profit?  

As The Herald's new editorial page editor, Peter Jackson wants to focus on ideas and solutions. Jackson, 46, is a well-known writer, conservation advocate and community voice throughout the Pacific Northwest. He was named to the Herald post on Wednesday, replacing longtime editorial editor Bob Bolerjack, who left the company in June. Peter Jackson named Herald editorial page editor  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT THU JUL 19 2012
TODAY
LIGHT WIND...BECOMING W 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. W SWELL 3 FT AT 9 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 3 FT AT 9 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS AFTER MIDNIGHT.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

7/18 Where's Chris?, Clean Water Act, ocean acid, Kinder Morgan, coal export, Issaquah salmon, Cornwall landfill, Bainbridge crabs

(Mother Jones)
To show progress in Puget Sound recovery, Governor Chris Gregoire today is on her “fishable, swimmable, diggable” tour with Leadership Council chair Martha Kongsgaard, past chair Bill Ruckelshaus and new Partnership director Tony Wright. They’ll be highlighting recovery progress by visiting Hood Canal, Samish Bay and Burien. Gov. Gregoire to tour Burien rain gardens, Seahurst Park restoration project  

Forty years ago, Congress enacted the Clean Water Act to end pollution of our rivers, lakes and bays. But today, in the Northwest and nationwide, most water bodies still don't qualify s clean and new threats to clean water are outpacing the act's enforcers. Ashley Ahearn, Bonnie Stewart, Robert McClure and Jason Alcorn of EarthFix, Ecotrope and Investigate West show and tell the story of “Clean Water: The Next Act”  Clean Water Act’s Anti-Pollution Goals Prove Elusive  

The Pacific Ocean is growing more acidic at a much faster rate than anticipated, scientists say, putting everything from corals to mussels in jeopardy. Researchers say carbon dioxide from the atmosphere forms carbonic acid in the ocean, changing the seawater enough that it can dissolve the shells of coral and shellfish. The water off the west coast of Vancouver Island is changing at an unprecedented rate, meaning vulnerable life forms in the ocean's food chain must adapt or die. Pacific Ocean acid levels jeopardizing marine life  

Kinder Morgan’s 1,150-kilometre Trans Mountain pipeline that transports oil from Alberta to southwestern B.C. has averaged about one leak a year in the past decade, but has not experienced the kind of major spill seen more recently in Alberta and Michigan from other pipelines. “The pipeline is in many ways in better condition than when it was constructed almost 60 years ago,” said Kinder Morgan vice-president of operations engineering Hugh Harden.  Pipeline safety records under scrutiny as B.C. set to get more  

The Vancouver (WA) City Council passed a resolution of concern Monday about proposed coal export terminal projects targeting the Pacific Northwest, asking for a cumulative look at their impacts, and requesting to be a part of any environmental impact reviews. Vancouver wants role in talking about coal  

The iconic Issaquah Salmon Hatchery is celebrating 75 years, and to mark the occasion, the Issaquah History Museums is educating residents about the downtown facility — a lifesaver for countless salmon since the 1930s.  Conservationists and longtime Issaquah residents credit the hatchery for restoring the historic Issaquah Creek salmon runs after decades of logging and mining damaged the creek and surrounding watershed. Issaquah Salmon Hatchery history is focus of 75th anniversary program

Workers are drilling a dozen wells this week at a former garbage dump on the waterfront, so officials overseeing cleanup there can measure pollution in groundwater feeding into Bellingham Bay. It's another small step in a multi-year effort to repair the environmental damage done by accumulated solid waste on a 16.5-acre site at the foot of Cornwall Avenue. The area was a landfill for 12 years, ending in 1965. Before that it was a sawmill, with log storage and wood disposal.  Bellingham's Cornwall Avenue landfill cleanup continues with new wells, testing  

Bainbridge Island police are on the hunt for rogue anglers who are getting a little crabby. Crab pots have been sinking into place around the island since the crabbing season began July 1. For the 2012 season, however, no crabbing is allowed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. "If you have your gear out there in the water, technically you are still crabbing on the off-days," said Lieutenant Bob Day of the Bainbridge Island Police Department.  Bainbridge Island police have eye out for crab poachers  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT WED JUL 18 2012
TODAY
NW WIND 10 TO 15 KT...BECOMING W 10 TO 20 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 6 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT...EASING TO 10 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 2 TO 4 FT...SUBSIDING TO 1 FT AFTER MIDNIGHT. W SWELL
 5 FT AT 11 SECONDS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter. 

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

7/17 Springer, Victoria sewage, Padilla Bay, canoe paddle, porpoise deaths, coal exports, coastal living

Coastal Blue (Laurie MacBride)
Laurie MacBride in Eye on Environment writes: “For most of the year, we live surrounded by the greens and browns that dominate the forest around our Gulf Islands home. But in the summer, when we’re travelling up the BC coast on our boat, blue takes over. Water, waves, surface currents, tidelines, distant shorelines, mountain ranges and sky: together they form a multi-hued blue landscape, stretching out ahead and rolling out behind like a long, delicate tapestry. Blue on blue on blue: it’s a look I love....” Blue on Blue  

Last weekend’s events in Telegraph Bay concluded the 10th anniversary celebration of the rescue of the orphan whale Springer and reunion with her family. Alan Waterman of CBC News visits the rescue team who helped save a stranded orca a decade ago, as they reunite. Rescue reunion  More whale love:  Gregor at CBC News Radio interviews Paul Spong, founder of OrcaLab, about the capture and release of Springer the Killer Whale ten years ago, and how she's doing now. Springer: then and now

New blog: “We were glad to get all of the family out of Waikiki and Ala Moana waters by July 13, 10 days after the full moon. That’s when the stinging box jellyfish ( Carybdea alata ) begin showing up in local waters....” Box Jellyfish and Rats in Paradise

The federal, provincial and regional governments yesterday announced a deal to fund a proposed $782-million secondary sewage treatment plant in the capital region.  “This is a quarter of a million dollars to end dumping of sewage into the waters around Victoria,” Conservative MP James Moore said of the federal government’s share of the money. Currently, sewage is sieved through a six-millimetre metal screen before it is piped about a kilometre into the ocean.  Three governments announce deal for Greater Victoria sewage plant 

Seventy more acres of Padilla Bay tidelands are now protected, thanks to a grant from the Northwest Straits Foundation.  The state Department of Ecology bought the land from its private owner to add to the Padilla Bay Estuarine Research Reserve so it could be protected as a habitat for marine life such as salmon, crab and black brant geese. The reserve is also used for education and research.  Ecology adds 70 acres to protected Padilla Bay land  

If you like to watch: Sun comes out to help welcome Canoe Journey paddlers to Port Angeles  

Scientists in the Puget Sound region are baffled as an alarming number of porpoises have washed up on local beaches this year.
The most recent death was discovered Thursday on a Whidbey Island beach. That brought the death toll to seven this year. Five others were found on Whidbey and one was found on Camano Island.  Scientists puzzled by what's killing Puget Sound porpoises

U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell has asked Washington transportation officials to study the effect four proposed coal export terminals would have on Washington's waterways, rail lines and roadways. Cantwell, D-Wash., wrote to Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond early this month.  Cantwell urges WSDOT assessment of coal terminals' effect on transportation  

Meanwhile:  Backers of the No Coal! city initiative outlawing coal trains have filed a motion in Whatcom County Superior Court, contending that the city lawsuit attempting to block their initiative is improper under state law. The motion, filed by attorney Breean Beggs, cites the Washington Act Limiting Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation, known as the SLAPP law. Coal train initiative backers challenge Bellingham's lawsuit

A new study from the European Centre for Environment & Human Health, Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry, University of Exeter, has revealed that people living near the coast tend to have better health than those living inland.  Coastal Populations Are Healthier Than Those Inland, UK Study Finds  

Now, your tug weather--
 WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 300 AM PDT TUE JUL 17 2012
TODAY
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 5 FT AT 10 SECONDS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT...BECOMING NW 10 TO 15 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. W SWELL 6 FT AT 9 SECONDS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Monday, July 16, 2012

7/16 Tribal climate, Navy mitigation, Tulalip hatchery, Nisqually shellfish, coal comments, Burfoot naturalists

(Photo: Grant Lawrence)
Just when you thought it was safe to go swimming in West Vancouver . . . along comes a massive, prehistoric fish to throw a bony dorsal fin at the plan. This was driven home for Grant Lawrence, a CBC radio host, when he came face-to-face with one of the most ancient creatures to inhabit local waters as he prepared to take a dip near Dundarave early this week.  Radio host finds a sea monster in West Vancouver  

If you like to watch: The 2012 International Conservation Photography Awards exhibit at Seattle's Burke Museum mixes an environmental-activism message with some utterly transportive camera work. Michael Upchurch reviews. Conservation-photo award winners at the Burke: beautiful, brutal, complex  

If you like to watch: Northern Lights over Metro Vancouver, North America

A national symposium on climate change and possible ways to adapt and slow the effects will be hosted by North Olympic Peninsula coastal tribes beginning Tuesday. The inaugural First Stewards symposium, which will continue through Friday at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C., is expected to be attended by some 300 coastal indigenous tribal elders, leaders, scientists, witnesses and other scientists and policy leaders from around the nation. The Hoh, Makah and Quileute tribes and the Quinault Indian Nation created the symposium, saying tribal coastal people are among the most affected by climate change.  Peninsula tribes host national climate change conference  

The Navy has agreed to pay nearly $9 million for fish and shellfish enhancement projects to compensate Indian tribes in the Hood Canal region. The projects are designed to reconcile a loss of tribal fish and shellfish resources related to Naval Base Kitsap's $715-million explosives handling wharf at Bangor. It is the first time the Navy has compensated tribes in the Hood Canal area for any construction project, according to Jeromy Sullivan, chairman of the Port Gamble S'Klallam Tribal Council. Christopher Dunagan reports.  Navy to pay $9 million to tribes in mitigation for wharf project  

The Tulalip Tribes released 12 million salmon from their hatchery this year -- including a record 1.3 million coho -- and are raising a bumper crop of fingerlings to be released in 2013. These salmon help preserve wild fish by providing other salmon for people to catch and eat. But when it comes to salmon survival, the tribes are swimming upstream, Tulalip officials say. The ocean survival rates for both hatchery and wild salmon in the Puget Sound region have taken a nosedive the past few years, according to the tribes. Bill Sheets reports.  Salmon survival plummets  

When the Nisqually Indian Tribe purchased a Henderson Inlet commercial shellfish farm from Puget Sound pioneer oysterman Jerry Yamashita early in 2010, the tribe gambled that water-quality problems plaguing the South Sound inlet could be reversed. The $2 million gamble appears to be paying off. The 122 acres of tidelands has had two water-quality upgrades from the state Department of Health in the past two years, expanding the tribe’s ability to put its only commercial shellfish-growing ground to work. John Dodge reports. Tribe bet that water issues could be fixed; it paid off  

Health authorities have closed shellfish beds along the eastern shoreline of South Kitsap because of high levels of paralytic shellfish poison, sometimes called "red tide." Some of the highest levels seen this week were in Clam Bay near Manchester, where the PSP toxin was measured at 226 micrograms per 100 grams of shellfish tissue, nearly three times the closure level of 80.  Shellfish poison closes South Kitsap beaches

The public comment period for the proposed coal-export terminal north of Bellingham has been tentatively delayed until fall, as the agencies heading up the environmental review process try to find the times and places to hold the public meetings.  The three co-lead agencies for the environmental review — Ecology, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Whatcom County — are currently working with a company contracted to help perform the review to determine where and when to hold public meetings, state Department of Ecology spokeswoman Katie Skipper said.  Comment period for coal terminal moved to fall  

Those who took time to spend their Sunday morning at Priest Point Park or Burfoot Park likely ran into several volunteers along both beaches who were busy pointing out various sea creatures and wildlife as part of a beach naturalist program. The program was launched by the South Sound Estuary Association and is now in its third year. So far it has trained 49 people as beach naturalists, volunteers who can explain to children and adults the natural habitat at parks that abut Budd Inlet or other parts of Puget Sound.  Not just another day at the beach  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 230 AM PDT MON JUL 16 2012
TODAY
VARIABLE WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT. NW SWELL 7 FT AT 10 SECONDS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND TSTMS.
TONIGHT AND TUE
W WIND 10 TO 20 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 3 FT. NW SWELL 6 FT AT 9 SECONDS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS.

--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told

Friday, July 13, 2012

7/13 Monterey kings, dead humpback, Sequalitchew Cr., Seattle waterfront, Thurston CAO, train emissions, Little Squalicum Beach, bad plastic

From Off the Road, The Travel Adventures of a Nomad on the Cheap: “The beaches of Monterey, California—and nearby sites, like Cannery Row and the Monterey Bay Aquarium—are a fine place to spend a summer Sunday afternoon, but it’s two miles due west and 100 feet straight down that the salmon are teeming. This pair of kings was caught from a kayak.” Photo by Andrew Bland.  Return of the King Salmon  

You like thunderstorms? Cliff Mass does. Thunderstorm Fest

A Fisheries Department spokesman says a humpback whale that washed up last month on the beach in White Rock had fishing gear caught in its mouth before it starved to death. Paul Cottrell says it's tough to pin down where the longline fishing gear came from or whether it was being used or abandoned. Young humpback whale found on White Rock beach died of starvation: report

Work begins in earnest next week on a plan to restore water flows to the water-starved Sequalitchew Creek in DuPont. The stream-restoration project is part of a 2011 settlement agreement among CalPortland Co., environmental groups and the state Department of Ecology that would allow CalPortland Co. to seek permits to expand its regional mine in DuPont.  Plan to restore water to DuPont's Sequalitchew Creek creek starts soon  

The latest proposal to remake Seattle's waterfront is being compared to the 1962 World's Fair in terms of its wide-ranging impact on the community. Now comes the funding part.  After the Alaskan Way Viaduct, city sees 'a waterfront for all'

 

The Thurston County commissioners could soon approve a proposed critical-areas ordinance that has generated outrage among some residents. County staffers and the commissioners are reviewing comments received during a public hearing last month with a goal of approving the revised ordinance as early as July 24.  Controversial critical-areas ordinance closer to being OK'd  

A University of Puget Sound chemistry professor is studying train emissions in Tacoma, gathering data that could be used to determine whether more stringent regulations are needed and whether greenhouse gases are decreasing. Dan Burgard and student Matt Breuer are spending four weeks standing on bridges above railroad tracks at Foss Waterway and Chambers Bay, using a machine to measure emissions from passing trains. The research is important because most of the data on rail emissions is outdated, and testing occurs in a laboratory, Burgard said. Little or none of the information was done in real time.  UPS professor taking measure of Tacoma train emissions  

Whatcom County health officials warn the public not to swim or wade off Little Squalicum Beach because of too much bacteria in the water. Recent testing shows that bacteria at the beach exceed federal water quality standards. Warning signs will remain posted there. Pollution prompts warning to swimmers at Bellingham's Little Squalicum Beach

It's like beer goggles gone wrong. A common chemical used to make plastics also causes fish to indiscriminately court members of other species – behaviour that could result in interbreeding and the merger of two species.  Plastic ingredient makes fish court other species

Now, your weekend tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 900 AM PDT FRI JUL 13 2012
TODAY
E WIND TO 10 KT BECOMING W 10 TO 15 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 7 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF TSTMS.
TONIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 4 FT AT 7 SECONDS. A CHANCE OF TSTMS.
SAT
W WIND 10 KT. WIND WAVES 1 FT. W SWELL 5 FT AT 8 SECONDS.
SAT NIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 5 FT BUILDING TO 7 FT AFTER MIDNIGHT.
SUN
SW WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 OR 2 FT. W SWELL 7 FT.
--
"Salish Sea News & Weather" is compiled as a community service by Mike Sato. To subscribe, send your name and email to: msato@salishseacom.com. Your email information is never shared and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Salish Sea News: Communicate, Educate, Advocate

Follow on Twitter.

Salish Sea Communications: Truth Well Told


Thursday, July 12, 2012

7/12 Copper salmon, coal trains, Enbridge, Kinder Morgan, Stanley Park birds, Elwha salmon, Partnership, Asian smoke, Paddle 2012, species protection

(PHOTO: Russ Maddox)
Researchers have known for years that copper from brake pads and pesticides can confuse salmon entering their natal streams — but the outcome could be far worse than confusion, according to a new study. Juvenile salmon exposed to copper in a stream are more likely to be eaten by predators. That's the conclusion of Jenifer McIntyre, a research biologist who conducted a series of experiments at the University of Washington's Big Beef Creek Research Station near Seabeck. Christopher Dunagan reports.   Copper can make salmon vulnerable to predators, UW researcher finds  

A new study purports to add to mounting evidence that more coal trains will further strain already taxed rail lines in the Pacific Northwest. The study was both commissioned and conducted by groups who promote the interests of farmers and ranchers in the West. A spokeswoman for BNSF Railway had serious reservations about the study. Even so, the study's authors insist the results are objective and should demand the attention of those who will decide the fate of proposed coal terminals in Oregon and Washington, including the Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point. Study: Coal terminal near Bellingham would tie up rail lines    See also: How coal trains could choke NW's economic engines

Edmonds residents and officials on Wednesday rallied against plans to double coal train traffic through their community. The coal would be shipped to a proposed terminal a 100 miles to the north. It’s something the city fears because more than 40 trains per day already bisect the waterfront, causing limited access to the Kingston ferry dock and waterfront businesses. The ferry system chief said a solution like a new tunnel or underpass would require a partnership between state and local officials with private companies. "But I know enough to know we don't have the money, the city doesn't have the money and the private sector doesn't have all the money but together we might be able to craft a solution that really we need now,” said David Mosley.  Edmonds residents rally against coal train traffic  

British Columbia Premier Christy Clark has issued a public warning to Enbridge Inc. about its proposed Northern Gateway pipeline in the wake of revelations about the company’s handling of a massive 2010 oil spill in Michigan.  B.C. Premier puts Enbridge on notice over pipeline safety

Starting in September 2012, Texas-based pipeline giant Kinder Morgan will begin public consultations for an estimated $4 billion expansion of its Trans Mountain pipeline from Alberta’s oil sands in Edmonton to Metro Vancouver. Their plan is to more than double the capacity of the pipeline by 2017. The project rivals Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline, which aims to export oil sands crude through the Great Bear Rainforest. With the benefit of an existing right-of-way, could Kinder Morgan succeed in making Vancouver the first major artery of oil sands expansion on the West Coast? Or will their record of oil spills tar up their plans?  Southern Gateway: An American pipeline giant's plans for Vancouver  

At least 236 bird species that rely on Stanley Park for food, wintering, migration stopovers, or breeding habitat would be at risk from an oil-tanker spill in Burrard Inlet, a Wilderness Committee report warned Wednesday. The report, written by Greenpeace International co-founder Rex Weyler, notes that a spill would have devastating and long-lasting impacts on aquatic habitat critical to birds. Among them are globally significant populations of wintering Barrow's goldeneye and thousands of surf scoters, a species of special concern in B.C.  Wilderness Committee raises alarm over oil-tanker threat to Stanley Park wildlife  

Scientists knew ocean-going fish would eventually return to the Elwha River on Washington state's Olympic Peninsula, once two massive concrete dams were torn down. They just didn't think it would happen so soon. Biologists tracking fish in a tributary of the Elwha last month spotted wild steelhead that likely made it on their own past the site where the Elwha Dam stood for nearly a century -- before it was dismantled in March as part of the nation's largest dam removal project. With 1 of 2 dams down, fish return to Elwha River  

Todd Myers of the Washington Policy Center writes: "The cleanup is on a third boss in five years. One problem may be a lack of focus on the hard science of saving the Sound."  Puget Sound Partnership: Can anybody here figure out a plan?

I asked Cliff Mass if he was certain the fireworks he refers to were made in Asia and not in the U.S.: “In a previous blog I made the case that smoke from huge Asian wildfires was moving across the Pacific, greatly degrading air quality in Northwest....and as I shall tell you, poor visibility is only one of the effects.  And our Asian friends also contributed to a major degradation of air quality on two days in particularly--July 4th and 5th--as a result of the massive amount of fireworks they have sold us.”  Asian Fires and Fireworks Smoke Up the Northwest  

Pullers from central and southern Washington coastal areas will reach LaPush today in the 2012 Paddle Journey. The canoe journey of Native Americans from the Pacific Northwest, Canada and other areas will end in a celebration at the end of the month hosted by the Squaxin Island tribe in Kamilche near Shelton.  Paddle Journey 2012 canoes due in LaPush today  

Five amphibians and reptiles that call Washington home are among more than 50 included in a petition for federal protection. Arizona’s Center for Biological Diversity has filed the petition for protection of 53 amphibians and reptiles in 45 states. 5 Washington critters among species group would have feds protect  

Now, your tug weather--
WEST ENTRANCE U.S. WATERS STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA- 900 PM PDT WED JUL 11 2012
THU
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 3 FT AT 7 SECONDS. AREAS OF MORNING FOG AND PATCHY DRIZZLE.
THU NIGHT
W WIND 10 TO 15 KT. WIND WAVES 1 TO 2 FT. W SWELL 3 FT AT 7 SECONDS. AREAS OF DRIZZLE AFTER MIDNIGHT.

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